Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón was the winner of the Golden Lion, the top prize at the Venice Film Festival, for his film Roma, exactly one year after fellow countryman Guillermo del Toro won the same prize for his sci-fi film The Shape of Water.
The black and white film set in Mexico City in the early seventies, marks the cinematic return of the Cuarón to his homeland after his 2001 international hit Y Tu Mamá También. Starring Yalitza Aparicio and Marina de Tavira, Roma follows a middle-class family held together by Cleo, the domestic worker. She and Sofía, the family’s matriarch wrestle with changes in the family home while Mexico braces for a confrontation between the government-backed militia and student demonstrators.
The Mexican film by Cuarón also becomes the second Latin American film to ever win the top prize at the Italian film festival after the Venezuelan film From Afar / Desde allá by Lorenzo Vigas in 2015.